No Buddy

The floor's cat-less, 
The couch is bare.
There's no Buddy, 
Only Buddy hair.

There's no need now
To block the stairs,
And still I step
Over empty air.

And every hour
And everywhere,
I look around
And no Buddy's there.

We had to put Buddy to sleep two days ago. He was a wonderfully low-key cat, perfect for our low-key family. He inspired a number of poems (see my Nobody like Buddy collection). Peace to our s!

A Trio of Poems Today

NaPoWriMo22 Day 2 — As with past Aprils, I find myself writing more than the minimum this month, making up for my non-writing the rest of the year. Here are three from today, the first in response to the prompt at “to write a poem based on a word featured in a tweet from Haggard Hawks, an account devoted to obscure and interesting English words.” I chose the word kiddle, to embrace warmly, caress.

No Kiddling

A peck on the cheek I don’t mind,
Holding hands is perfectly fine,
But smooching and groping
And groping and smooching
In public is crossing the line!

This next poem is doubly inspired. After reading the poem David wrote (check it out at The Skeptic’s Kaddish) in response to his friend Muri’s Poetry Scavenger Hunt, I decided to join in. For my response to her first prompt–to write a bob and wheel poem–I used the word spree from David’s poem as my jumping off point.

Out of Bounds

Trust me—
every spree, binge or tear
ends with some misery:
a small drop of despair,
sometimes an entire sea.

Finally, a follow-up to my cat poem from yesterday. Peace to your !

More Felines

to note
how not-nice
I feel—darn cat at
my ankles, cat teeth on my calf.

Getting a Pet

Oh, Mother, will you let me get
A darling little porcupette?
A porcupette to be all mine’s
The only pet that my heart pines—

Forget it, dear, the thing’s got spines.

[Sigh] How about a puppy?

I’m thinking more like guppy.

© Stephanie Malley

NaPoWriMo21 Day 24 – I didn’t use the prompt from

I’m posting this poem written earlier in April because it includes animals, as does today’s prompt. I learned a few months ago that baby porcupines are called porcupettes–how cute is that? I tried writing a poem about porcupettes at that time, and nothing worked out. This month, in my over-inspired condition, it all came together. Peace to your !


I’ve written many poems about my family’s cat. Here’s another one for the collection. Peace to your ♥ !


Of virtuous traits, Buddy has a few.
He’s happy rising at five-thirty, too,
From what I can tell, and he doesn’t smell,
Or not often. He eats the same dry food
Day in, day out, with a good cattitude
And doesn’t ignore the bits on the floor.
He endures all sorts of indignities:
Being cooed at; being swaddled when he’s
Getting his nails clipped; having liquid dripped
On his neck, for fleas, without his consent;
And, for hairballs, his paw smeared with ointment.
He’s content to nap on anyone’s lap
But snubbed, accepts his fate with feline grace.
Likewise when the four girls get in his face—
No angry meow. And finally, how
Handsome he is, and low-key, just like us.
In our book, Buddy’s an A+++.

© Stephanie Malley

NaPoWriMo20 Day 29 - Write a paean to your pet. Thank you to Maureen Thorson at for the prompt. 

“Morning Prayer for Mice”

Buddy has perfected the art of sleeping. He’ll rise from his basket, stretch, wander into the kitched for a bite to eat and drink, then head back to his basket for a well-deserved rest. I’m jealous. Peace to your ♥ !

Morning Prayer for Mice

Bless this cat.
Bless this house.
Bless us, each
And every mouse.
Buddy hunts
With feline mettle
But only for
A place to settle.
Give us this day
Our mice hijinks
While Buddy catches
Forty winks.

© Stephanie Malley

“Interior Cat”

Buddy is an indoor cat, though he doesn’t have unlimited use of the house. The steps leading upstairs are blocked off by a piece of cardboard he could jump over if he were smart enough to realize it. He also gets put down the basement at night, where he has a number of comfortable sleeping options, among them the top of a canvas suitcase. Sometimes he’s so ready to call it a day, he waits by the basement door for one of his people to accompany him downstairs for his nightly brushing; other times we have to gently tip him off the chair he’s snoozing on. Rough life!

Peace to your !

 Interior Cat

 Who needs an interior decorator
 When you have an interior cat?
 Our Buddy’s classic cat design
 Looks good on anything flat.

 Why get caught up in color schemes
 And matching this hue or that?
 Every rug, afghan and throw pillow
 Goes well with our black-and-white cat.

 Why spend money on knickknacks 
 That just gather dust on the shelf?
 No china cat compares with ours;
 He practically cleans himself.

 © Stephanie Malley


There’s a fine line between “pet me” and “hands off,” but only Buddy knows where that line is, and most days, he’s not telling. Peace to your ♥ !


Everything’s good. He’s peaceful and calm.
His presence is soothing. His purring is balm.

I could lie here with Buddy for hours on end,
But suddenly, somehow, we’re no longer friends.

He’s swatting at me with claws that need clipping
And baring his teeth for a bout of cat nipping.

What a fickle, despicable thing to do!
Suddenly, somehow, it’s high time I shoo.

© Stephanie Malley

“A Cat’s Home is His Castle”

It’s a good thing cats aren’t predisposed to big egos; if all the admiration went to Buddy’s head, it would be enormous. Peace to your ♥ !

 A Cat’s Home is His Castle

The cushion on the bookshelf is His Royal Highness’ throne,
And Buddy, when he reigns there, is seldom all alone.
One subject comes to shake his paw; the next, to stroke his fur;
A third to scratch behind his ears in hopes to hear him purr.
The final subject simply sits and gazes at his face,
As though to etch each whisker in her memory just in case
Some unexpected Act of Man hitherto unknown
Should erase the hundred photos of King Buddy from her phone.

© Stephanie Malley

“Speaking of the Cat”

We’ve had Buddy for two-and-a-half years, and he’s still the number one topic of conversation in the house. What did we talk about before he came into our lives? (Besides the weather, which offers more in the way of variety than he does. :) )

Peace to your ♥ !

 Speaking of the Cat

Buddy grooms and sleeps and eats,
A pattern that he then repeats;
A regimen that doesn’t vary,
Come July or January;
A routine anything but dull
To us whose talk is Buddy-full.

© Stephanie Malley